Municipal Waste’s Tony Foresta: Taking Time Off From Band ‘Made It More Fun’ Now [Interview]
It's been five years since crossover thrash stars Municipal Waste last released an album. Frontman Tony Foresta discussed the band's new record, Slime and Punishment, as a guest on Full Metal Jackie's weekend radio program, the deal with the delay in output, the addition of a second guitarist, being a metal lifer and more. Check out the chat below.
How ya doing, Tony?
Hello. How you doing? Good to be here.
We're here to talk about the new album, which is called Slime and Punishment. It's been awhile since the last Municipal Waste album. Why so long and why now to release this?
We just had so many records out already and we have a lot of songs on those records because we don't write really long songs so we just kind of felt like the world wasn't ready yet for a sixth Municipal Waste album. So we had to let it rest for a few years and kind of do our own projects and hang out at home and just be ourselves for a while. And it finally just felt like the right time to do a new record — and I think people wanted it. We were getting harassing emails from a lot of people like, "Why the hell isn't there a new record yet?" So here we are, we did it.
Slime and Punishment is Nick Poulos' first album with Municipal Waste. How did having a second guitarist in the studio take you in different creative directions?
I think it helped us get the more metal punk sound that we like. It sounds like a cheesy thing to say when you say metal punk, but we always say speed metal punk or whatever. But he's just like the perfect candidate to be a member of our band. Sacrilegious are one of his favorite bands as well as Carcass, so that meshes real well with the stuff we like and he's been an old friend of ours for a while.
Phil was in a band with him, Ryan's in a band with him — other bands with him. And we just knew he would mesh well and we always wanted a second guitar player. We just didn't want to take the time to do it. It's a lot of work to teach somebody all the songs and do all that. But Nick just kind of fell into it. He was the perfect addition for us and we're glad to have him. I think creatively, it kicked our butts in gear, had us write a little more interesting stuff and it actually helped us keep the speed metal punk vibe that we have.
Guitarist Ryan Waste said that you wanted to make a heavier album this time. How do you make an already heavy band even heavier?
Add a guitar player, I don't know. We just wanted to have just a thicker sound and just a tougher approach with everything. Just more grit-in-your-teeth style music. Most of the stuff is like... was almost too fast in the past and we didn't slow down, per se, we just have more breakdowns and more intricate stuff going on that makes it come across as more pissed off. We're really happy with how it came out.
Tony, you have other bands and projects going when Municipal Waste has down time. How has having other creative outlets made you better musicians when it's time to focus on Municipal Waste?
I think it's made it more fun. It's like you look forward to — it's always fun to mix it up and work with different people. You actually learn when you're working with different musicians and I think for us it makes it fun to come back to Municipal Waste. We've been doing Municipal Waste for so long, you know, it's almost like muscle memory at this point when you play the songs live.
Now, it's like you take some time off and then it's like, "Oh cool, we're doing a Waste show!" It makes it exciting again. I don't know, it's fun. So we can just mix it up, go back and forth with other projects and you learn a lot, too. You learn from other people, the way they write songs, the way they interact with people socially. It's been good, it's been really good. I've learned a lot in the past five years. I think that's helped a lot with the writing process and with us getting this record done.
Tony, how much do bands like Nuclear Assault and DRI and other bands you've listened to growing up continue to influence you at this point in your career?
That's a good question. I love that you said Nuclear Assault because they're one of my favorite bands. I actually just had a couple of beers with Danny [Lilker, bass] two nights ago when we were in Philadelphia. I don’t know, influence as he's someone that's a lot older than me. I'm no spring chicken either. I just turned 40, so, just learning with someone that's older that has done it all and doing it because they love it. They love playing music.
Danny, by far, isn't a rich person, but he's experienced. He's done everything you could ever want to do and he does it because he loves it. That's influential to me. That's why I want to play music. I'm not trying to top the charts or make a million dollars. I don’t give a s--t about that. I just want to play music and meet people, travel the world and do what I love. Meeting people like Danny is very inspiring to me because that guy is a lifer. So am I. I'm gonna do this forever. [laughs]
A lot of touring coming up, starting with Vans Warped Tour. Talk about the lineup as well as your plans beyond that.
It's with like, Hatebreed, GWAR, Pennywise, Valient Thorr. There's a million bands on that tour. It's very interesting lineup this year, people should definitely check it out. It's gonna really strange. The Adolescents are playing too, I'm really excited to see them. They're one of my favorite bands. Then, we come home straight from that and us and Hatebreed go out to England to play the Bloodstock Festival. So yeah, after we get home from this trip we're gonna be playing a s--t load of Municipal Waste shows, which I think people have been wanting to see us do for a long time.
I appreciate you taking the time. Good luck with this new album and see you out there this summer.
Thank you so much. Thanks for the support, I really appreciate it.
Thanks to Tony Foresta for the interview, Grab your copy of 'Slime and Punishment' now at Amazon or digitally through iTunes. Catch the band on the road with all upcoming tour dates found at their Facebook page and find out where you can hear Full Metal Jackie’s weekend show at this location.
See Municipal Waste in the Best Thrash Album of Each Year Since 1983
Where Do Municipal Waste Rank Among the 10 Greatest Crossover Thrash Bands?